The Rise of the Collegiate Snowflake

By Abraham H. Miller, Originally published in the New York Observer

Collegiate snowflakes are everywhere. They avoid hearing a dissonant voice, a controversial idea, or an intellectual challenge. They demand safe spaces for their intellectual conformity and trigger warnings to give them advance notice that they might hear something that would upset them. Scrawl the words “Donald Trump” on campus and the snowflakes demand psychological counseling and sedatives.

There was always a shadow university, an oligarchic bureaucracy wedded to the cultural mores of the time. Decades ago they did not call it the office of resident life or the office of diversity and opportunity. But there was the office of the dean of women and the corresponding one of the dean of men.

The dean of women was usually a post-menopausal virgin whose tacit job description was to create an environment where no coed lost her virginity on campus. Strict separation of the sexes in housing, the implementation of curfews for coeds, and keeping birth control devices out of campus-based drugstores were the office’s obsessions. The dean of men had a similar mandate.

These offices, however, were not taken seriously in terms of curricula decisions.

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